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Monday, December 30, 2013

Fitting up galley and passageway flooring

Here's some progress pics from our holiday flooring project. Finished the mahogany framing for the deck hatches in the galley and passageway, and did all the cutting and fit up of the floor planks in these areas. These will be glued down with heavy duty polyurethane based flooring adhesive like the wheelhouse and companion-way stairs. I am trying to be very consistent with the continuity of the planking as it lays across hatches and trim work. As you can see from the pics, this is a very labor intensive process, but the final product with all the flush trimmed hatches is pretty neat looking. Once the floor is down, I'll go back and put a clear finish on the mahogany hatch coamings. I expect that they will stay fairly light and provide a nice contrast with the dark reds and browns in the floor. The galley and passageway planks are just dry fit so next work day we'll pull them back up in sections and do the final glue down.

As with most big scale projects, I'm running across all kinds of little finish projects along the way that need to be completed first. Here's a couple of pictures of one of our latest... storage for pots and pans under the stove. Found this slide out wire rack at a local home improvement store. Just the right size and an easy bolt in installation. Another cardboard box temporary storage solution bites the dust.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

So with no big plans for the holidays this year, work continues on the flooring install... Weather has been amazingly mild, which has been great for boat work. Lots of dry sunny days for working outside (and keeping the sawdust off the boat) and the adhesives I'm working with are curing nicely. I've been working on the stairs now for a few days. This part of the job includes stair nosing, trim and lots of angles to fit out. Had to make some aesthetic decisions on the fly as far as the layout of the planks, but I'm happy with the results. We aren't using the heavy sound dampening underlay for the stairs or the rest of the lower decks (except for the aft cabin- more on that later) so we are using a different floor adhesive. This stuff is a little thicker, and has rubber granules in suspension to provide some degree of sound deadening. It's  also supposed to act as a moisture barrier. So far, it seems like good stuff. Now the race is on to get the galley and passageway floor glued down before the 3 gallons of adhesive left in the bucket hardens up. When re-sealed with plastic between the lid and the bucket, it seems to last about a week. So, today was spent milling trim for the deck hatches in prep for more flooring. I managed to install all the trim on the hatches this afternoon as well. If we can get the trim installed around the hatch openings in the next couple of days, we should be ready to fit-up and glue down the galley/passageway floor this weekend. Since this flooring is pre-finished, there is an immediate "wow factor " when it goes down. A big change from the plywood sub floor decks we've been living with since we started fitting out the interior. One other little project that I finally got around to was a drop tube for the fuel return to the day tank. Previously, the fuel returning to this tank just dropped down from a fitting in the top of the tank. This created the sound of a burbling brook in the aft cabin (which shares a bulkhead with this tank) whenever the furnace or main engine was running. Not as charming as it sounds... It was in my original fuel plumbing plan to fabricate this fitting when I put the fuel system together, but it kind of fell through the cracks. Now fuel returns down at the bottom of the day tank - where it should.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Wheelhouse sole

Some good progress on our Winter flooring project... Wheelhouse sole is mostly finished. This was our first foray into glue down engineered flooring and I think we are off to a good start. Their is always some degree of learning curve when tackling another big project on the boat, and this was certainly no different. The challenge for me personally is to realize that it takes additional time to develop a technique and a system for each type of new "trade" that we get into in our fit out of Kama Hele. There were certainly a few extra minor complications that we didn't anticipate in working with the new materials and techniques laying down this type of flooring. So the  wheelhouse took longer than anticipated,  but I feel satisfied with the end result and now that we have the system down, the rest of the flooring install should go quicker and easier. The wheelhouse finished sole was complicated by a double glue down process using a heavy 1/2" (2 lbs per sq foot) rubber based isolation mat over the sub floor, then the finished floor over that. This was to provide better soundproofing from the engine room directly below. There was also the soft patch to work around. This is a large hatch in the deck allows for future engine removal. The ledge around the setee and the helm had to be trimmed with floor planks and matching stair nose, and a cut out in the flooring here was incorporated for the lift up section under the setee that allows large items to be lowered down into the lower deck passageway. We are very limited in the stairwell dimensions for getting big stuff down below. The flooring is 1/2" engineered t&g product with seven ply backing and a pre-finished sapelle hardwood face. It has a slightly "pre-weathered" look and a darkened medium bevel at the edge of each board that gives it some character. The plywood base layers should give the floor pretty good stability as for as moisture and temperature variation. The glue is polyurethane based, super thick and tacky, and relatively easy to work with once you get rolling with it. Even when resealed tightly, it does harden up in the tub over the course of a few days. We'll have to plan the job accordingly as it comes in 4 gallon buckets and it ain't cheap. I am generally pleased with the finished results. It really works nicely with the other finishes on the boat and feels very solid when glued down. Next phase will be working our way down the stairs into the galley.